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Informed Consent

Informed Consent


 Ethical issues occur whenever decisions need to be made. Concerns on nurses’ ethical capability is an emerging issue that needs to be discussed. The majority of the nurses claim that they work in challenging environments that compromise their capabilities to carry out duties ethically. Since numerous investigations center their subjects on situational challenges to ethical actions, little to no information can be found on the nurses' perspective. Thus, in the current world, one of the most ethical dilemma nurses faces regularly is informed consent. Most nurse's duties revolve around making a decision based on certain findings hence incorporating patient concerns in decision making is incredibly difficult.

Informed Consent

  Consent is thought to be a mechanism used to ensure the patient comprehends and agrees to a medical procedure before the nurse commences performing it. Informed consent ought to be a concerted effort between the nurse or caregiver and the patient. A nurse should retrieve consent before making the patient sign anything or agree to anything. Nurses can provide the patient with what is termed as patient teaching as he or she confirms whether the patient comprehends the situation he or she is getting himself into (Akyüz et al., 2019). If possible the nurse may be permitted to make use of teach-backs so that the patient can understand everything that the medics will do. In other words, the nurses should assess the levels of understanding the patient possesses of the situation. Most of the time, nurses understand more than the patient hence the nurse must make the patient comprehend the situation in a more professional way.

 The idea of informed consent is both ethical and legal due to patient participation. The patient has to be informed of all the elements of his or her treatment (Hammer, 2016). Consequently, after being informed, the patient has to make a well-informed decision that will help in his recuperation.  Informed consent is inescapable due to the central role it plays in the decision making process. Retrieving informed consent from a patient pertains to human rights and the condition the patient is under.

 The patient has to be competent enough to make sound decisions on the treatment. Implied in offering informed consent as an evaluation of patient comprehension gives the medic the right to make recommendations and document the entire medication. In short, informed consent is a way of safeguarding the medical procedure administered to the patient using the patient's rights. In any given situation, consent has to be voluntary. For consent to be voluntary, one has to offer it freely and without any coercion (Bautista et al., 2017). Informed consent takes into consideration the bond between the patient and the nurse and effective communication. The ever-changing relationship between a nurse and a patient forces the nurse to play more than one role. For instance, has to be a friend to the patient while ensuring that he plays the parental role. However, as the nurse has to ensure that has he derives informed consent from a patient, he does it in a professional way that does not depict him as being unprofessional (Parada, 2017). A nurse needs to ensure that the patient fairly understands the medication before anything goes on. One way of informing a patient is by describing the condition and the dangers that might arise from the medication. This way, the patient knows everything that is to be done to ensure the successful execution of the entire process.

Applying Ethical Principles to Informed Consent

 The primary obligation of a medic is making decisions on matters about patient care. Decision making occurs in various situations. These decisions comprise of choosing suitable medication or mitigation measures (Nusbaum et al., 2017). Ethics is characteristic and attached to the treatment because the medic has an ethical responsibility to a patient ad for the sake of averting damage to the patient. Also, ethical norms are followed because the nurse has to demonstrate that he respects the values and principles of the patient.

 In terms of beneficence, a nurse must act in a way that benefits the patient. This means that a nurse's action has to be aligned with moral regulations and patient values. The nurse aims to protect, prevent, and eradicate any situations that might hinder the patient from fully recovering (Doody, & Noonan, 2016). It is vital to take note of the fact that highlighting beneficence requires the nurse to protect the patient hence the patient needs to be informed on everything that the nurse does daily. On the other hand, nonmaleficence requires the nurse to follow every regulation to ensure that most of the medical procedures are safe and sound to the patient. Besides, the patient has to receive all information about his condition and act accordingly. In case, the patient goes against the nurse's advice, the nurse has the right to step in and inform him of the consequences of his or her actions. A nurse should correct the patient without being rude. Another actionable utilization of nonmaleficence is seen in comparing the advantages and disadvantages of medication. Therefore, a nurse has a right to present all the facts to the patient and then convince the patient to choose the right route.

The Solution to Informed Consent

 Documented consent is important because it proves that the patient was aware of the decision he was making. Even if a medication is holistic and beneficial to the healthcare of the patient, the nurse must inform the patient of the intervention taken. Once the nurse comes into contact with the patient, he has to start building a relationship that will enable him to come to terms with the condition. The bond formed between the nurse and patient should then be used as a gateway to informed consent (Paudel, & Shrestha, 2016). Informed consent should not come in the last phase just before the patient receives medication, it should be a continuous process that informs on the decision making process. The patient should be informed in advance of the decisions he will make or the situational position he might find himself in. In the meantime, the nurse has to ensure that the bond he forms with the patient is built on trust so that everything is done under informed consent.

 In summary, nurses have to inform patients on the type of medication they will receive and the eventual consequences of the medication. The patient has a right to be informed on the intervention or medical procedure chosen. Informed consent helps the patient make a suitable decision. Nurses should form relationships with the patient to help in ensuring trust is built for the sake of the decision-making process. Application of ethical principles proves that nurses are obligated to prevent patients from harming themselves. Also, the nurse is to rectify any mistakes made by the patient regarding medication.




Akyüz, E., Bulut, H., & Karadağ, M. (2019). Surgical nurses’ knowledge and practices about informed consent. Nursing ethics, 26(7-8), 2172-2184.

Bautista-Espinel, G. O., Ardila-Rincón, N. A., Castellanos-Peñaloza, J. C., & Gene-Parada, Y. (2017). Knowledge and importance nursing professionals have on informed consent applied to nursing care acts. Universidad y Salud, 19(2), 186-196.

Nusbaum, L., Douglas, B., Damus, K., Paasche-Orlow, M., & Estrella-Luna, N. (2017). Communicating risks and benefits in informed consent for research: A qualitative study. Global qualitative nursing research, 4, 2333393617732017.

Doody, O., & Noonan, M. (2016). Nursing research ethics, guidance and application in practice. British Journal of Nursing, 25(14), 803-807.

Paudel, B., & Shrestha, G. K. (2016). Perception on informed consent regarding nursing care practices in a tertiary care center. Kathmandu Univ Med J, 56(4), 328-31.

Hammer, M. J. (2016, September). Informed Consent in the Changing Landscape of Research. In Oncology nursing forum (Vol. 43, No. 5).

1288 Words  4 Pages
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